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The AFL Player Ratings explained

What you need to know about our AFL Player Ratings

May 9, 2013  9:54 AM



Who is the best player in the AFL?

From the days when John Coleman was the king of Windy Hill to the modern-day heroics of Swan, Watson and Ablett, the question of where a player ranks against his peers has been at the heart of countless footy debates.

And while argument will always rage, the picture is about to become much clearer.
Beginning Thursday 9 May, Official AFL Player Ratings, brought to you by Vero, will be revealed for the first time.

The result of the most sophisticated, detailed and wide-ranging statistical system ever devised for AFL footy, Official AFL Player ratings will allow fans to determine where more than 650 listed players rank against each other.

To learn in detail how the system operates, download the Player Ratings - How It Works pdf

Since 2007, Champion Data has recorded each kick, mark and handball in every game played. Importantly, it has also recorded where on the ground those possessions took place, whether or not the player was under pressure and whether his disposal hit the target.

This comprehensive statistical mix has been augmented with other crucial elements such as chasing, corralling, perceived and actual physical pressure to assess each player’s impact in creating or disrupting scoring chains.

And to ensure Official AFL Player Ratings are measuring a player’s impact over time, the formula is applied to the previous 40 games. This means that in order to hold the coveted number one rating, a player needs to have performed at elite level for the best part of two AFL seasons.

The ratings will work similarly to the individual player rankings used in tennis and golf. Every week, each AFL player will be given a score based on his output from his most recent game plus points from a window of 39 previous matches.

The revised ratings will then be revealed on AFL.com.au each Monday. We will also publish lists of the number one rated player in each positional group allowing fans to better assess and discuss key up-coming match-ups.

While the Official AFL Player Ratings formula is complex, we know fans want to understand how players accumulate points, so over the coming weeks and months, we will reveal and discuss key elements of the system.

We’ve compiled an initial FAQ which answers some of the big questions about the system. As the season progresses, we’ll add to it in response to questions from fans. ,You can read the initial FAQ here.

In the meantime, we’ll be counting down to launch with a series of exclusive videos in which the top-rated players are discussed and analysed by those with a unique insight into their genius – their opponents.

Join us on Monday when we begin the countdown to the launch of Official AFL Player Ratings with the revelation of the number 10 rated player in the league.